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Ancho Chiles

In Mexican Spanish, there are three peppers that change names when changing state. Smoked jalapeños become ‘chipotle.’ A dried chilaca pepper is a pasilla or ‘little raisin’. Dried poblanos are ‘ancho,’ which is Spanish for ‘wide.’ Sweet and earthy, with just a touch of heat, these ancho chili peppers are native to Puebla, southeast of Mexico City.

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Ancho chile peppers have a rich, raisin-like flavor that is often associated with the flavor of Texas-style chili dishes—this is because chili con carne is principally made with ancho chile peppers. These peppers are very mild in heat, measuring in around 500 Scoville units. Ancho chile pepper is a common base ingredient for Mexican dishes, homemade chili, mole sauce, and meat marinades. You are able to bring the dried Ancho peppers "back to life" by pouring boiling hot water over them and steeping for about 20 minutes. Once rehydrated, the chiles can be deseeded and stuffed as an entree or pureed in a food processor for easy use.

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